The Painted Bunting (Passerina ciris) can be found in Central Texas throughout the summer months. They migrate south to Mexico, Panama and a number of Caribbean islands in the fall. Right now is the best time to photograph them as the summer heat makes it very uncomfortable to spend time in a hot bird blind. The heat index this week is forecasted to be over 100 degrees Fahrenheit. That’s why I have gone to the Pedernales Falls bird blind so often in recent days.
I was able to photograph this male Painted Bunting during my last visit to the park. These birds are hard to photograph. They don’t like leaving their protected areas and only show up for a few seconds at a time. One must be ready and spot them before they come in. Even though painted buntings are fairly common birds in much of Texas they are rarely seen. Their habit of remaining in deep brush except when the male sings early in the morning often cause them to be overlooked. Although primarily seed eaters, painted buntings rarely come to backyard feeders because they dislike being so far from cover. They also feed on insects.
This image was taken with my Canon EOS 5DS using my Canon EF 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6 II Lens set on 400mm. The camera was set on Manual mode with the aperture set at f/8, shutter speed at 1/1000th of a second and the ISO set at 400. This is a single photograph processed in Lightroom and Nik Color Efex Pro.
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